MARCUS KING, El Dorado (Fantasy/Easy Eye): ***½

The 23-year-old South Carolinian has been generating buzz with fierce, fluid guitar playing that understandably caught the ears of producer Dan Auerbach and drives his first officially solo album (i.e., not under his band name), which is less funky than earlier recordings but easily bridges soul, Southern rock, blues and jam-band grooves. King’s silk-and-grit vocals are just as thrilling in these crisp, dynamic arrangements. If stomping single “The Well” and “Say You Will” rock the party, the soul sway of “Wildflowers & Wine” and “Beautiful Stranger” brings dancers together and demonstrates King’s balladeer mettle. RIYL Gregg Allman, Chris Stapleton, Derek Trucks. At Fonda Theatre in Hollywood Friday, Jan. 31.

THE PROVEN ONES, Wild Again (Roseleaf/Gulf Coast): ***

Muscular, rocking blues from a crew of road-seasoned veterans: guitarist Kid Ramos, drummer Jimi Bott, frontman Brian Templeton, bassist Willie J. Campbell and keyboardist Anthony Geraci. “If You Be My Baby” and the slow-burning “Loan Me a Dime” respectfully nod to tradition while showcasing Geraci’s and Ramos’ tasty playing, but meatier rockers (“Road of Love,” the title track) are the main course. The band’s readying a follow-up to this Blues Music Award-nominated debut with producer Mike Zito, some of whose material will hopefully emerge during their set at the Mint in LA Friday, Jan. 17.

DELLA MAE, Headlight (Rounder/Concord): ****

“Walking in the footsteps of a woman who’s endured/ The silence of the sisters who look nothing like her/ … You are a headlight in this dark night.” Affirmation and uplift are recurring themes throughout the Grammy-nominated, all-female bluegrass outfit’s fourth album, stirringly led by the Dr. Christine Blasey Ford-inspired title track. The McCrary Sisters support frontwoman Celia Woodsmith’s gutsy vocals with gospel harmonies, and producer Dan Knobler refreshes their traditional sound with drums, electric guitar and keyboards. That amplifies the import of cleverly written tracks such as the bluesy “Working,” “The Odds of Getting Even,” the infertility-inspired “Waiting for You,” and “The Long Game.” Brava.

FUTUREBIRDS, Teamwork (VL/4L): ***

Ten years into their career, the Georgia-based psychedelic country-rockers keep things loose and amiable as a backyard jam, even while acknowledging the challenges of sustaining hope and relationships amid environmental devastation and modern life’s pernicious negativity. Love is championed as a natural fix, amid sunny guitars, lap steel and occasional saxophone. Highlights: “Trippin’,” the dreamy “Waiting on a Call,” the hummable “Killing Ground” (“Through the smoke and ashes/ The whole world’s burning down/ We flicker like a fire/ Slow dance on the killing ground”).